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Tag Archives: Switzerland

Swiss start-up grows diamonds of exceptional purity

Physicist Pascal Gallo co-founded a company in partnership with Lausanne’s Federal Institute of Technology to create ultra-pure lab-grown diamonds for demanding high-tech applications, longer lasting watches and high-quality jewelleryThe reason for developing the lab-grown diamonds was a search for ultra-pure stones that could enhance the power of energy trans­mission using lasers. Diamonds have extraordinary properties: they are the best conductors of heat which means they can create...

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A premium mode of transport for urban commuters

Technological innovations offer a Swiss solution to modern traffic problems in the form of a powerful e-bike capable of long-distance, high-speed urban commuting with full connectivity modelled on global brands such as TeslaSwitzerland may not feature on lists of the world’s leading carmakers, but it is home to the manufacturer of a state-of-the-art form of commuter transport. Stromer battery-powered e-bikes, made in the small village of Oberwangen near Bern, are capable of travelling...

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“Die SNB schuldet den Pensionskassen nichts (Nothing the SNB Owes to Pension Funds),” NZZ, 2019

NZZ, March 13, 2019. PDF. Long-term real interest rates do not reflect monetary policy. In the recent past, monetary policy has contributed to lower fixed-income interest rates but also to higher returns on other asset classes. Complaining about low rates but not adjusting one’s portfolio makes little sense; there is no “financial repression.” If politicians want to subsidize pension funds they should contribute funds from the government budget rather than asking the central bank to...

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“Die SNB schuldet den Pensionskassen nichts (Nothing the SNB Owes to Pension Funds),” NZZ, 2019

NZZ, March 13, 2019. PDF. Updated: Ökonomenstimme, March 22, 2019. HTML. Long-term real interest rates do not reflect monetary policy. In the recent past, monetary policy has contributed to lower fixed-income interest rates but also to higher returns on other asset classes. Complaining about low rates but not adjusting one’s portfolio makes little sense; there is no “financial repression.” If politicians want to subsidize pension funds they should contribute funds from the government...

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Swiss-German Media Quality

Two recent articles critically reflect on the quality of journalism in German speaking news, specifically in Switzerland. In the NZZ, Stephan Russ-Mohl reports about a study according to which in Switzerland, only 42 professors out of a sample of 1100 are regularly interviewed; they provide about half of the publicized statements. (In total, there are about 5500 professors in Switzerland.) Eine Vielfalt wissenschaftlicher Stimmen gibt es in der Medienarena nicht: Von den 1100 der rund...

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Swiss-German Media Quality

Two recent articles critically reflect on the quality of journalism in German speaking news, specifically in Switzerland. In the NZZ, Stephan Russ-Mohl reports about a study according to which in Switzerland, only 42 professors out of a sample of 1100 are regularly interviewed; they provide about half of the publicized statements. (In total, there are about 5500 professors in Switzerland.) Eine Vielfalt wissenschaftlicher Stimmen gibt es in der Medienarena nicht: Von den 1100 der rund...

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You Can’t Eat Gold, Report 14 Oct 2018

“You can’t eat gold.” The enemies of gold often unleash this little zinger, as if it dismisses the idea of owning gold and indeed the whole gold standard. It is a fact, you cannot eat gold. However, it dismisses nothing. This gives us an idea. Let’s tie three facts together. One, you can’t eat gold. Two, gold is in backwardation in Switzerland. And three, speculation is a bet on the price action. The fact that gold is...

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Negative Value Added of Switzerland’s Agricultural Sector

Farmers in Switzerland receive about CHF 2.7 billion in direct financial support annually. Total financial support by the federal and cantonal governments equals more than CHF 4 billion. But according to a report published by Zurich based think tank Avenir Suisse, this financial support constitutes just a minor part of the transfers from society at large to farmers, due to explicit and implicit subsidies, privileges, and—most importantly—negative externalities. A list of privileges...

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